Friday, December 30, 2005

Caregiving and paperwork

     Behind all the caregiving functions, whether home care or facility care, is always the responsibility for PAPERWORK. Pictured are Patti’s 2005 medical insurance records.   

     With four ringed binders and over 3 inches of files to go, this is how I annually spend my year end time. While organized all year long, the loose files are just November and December swamped this year by the “new” Medicare prescription plan. A significant percentage of those files also have also been scanned onto CD or DVD for easy carrying and enabling email and fax transmission.

     Patti's physical and cognitive challenges related to Multiple Sclerosis prevent her from even reading a page much less comprehending, remembering, and responding.

     The 2000+ hours I spent battling “the system” from October 2004 to September 2005 as Patti’s insurance attempted to retroactively cancel her was a valuable reinforcement in documentation. It may seem an embellishment but believe me missing documents or documents not responded to could land you on the loosing end of a medical insurance donnybrook. 

    A good friend of ours who teaches nursing at John Hopkins University and remains active in community nursing always reminds me that too many people “fall through the cracks” in the system every day because they are either unable or lack such support in dealing with logistics of health care and our health care insurance system.

     Please do not look at that picture and feel sorry for me. Feel for a neighbor, or friend, or family member who cannot keep pace with a health care insurance system melting down around us. Better yet, if you possess organizational skill or time then reach out and help someone from falling through the cracks.


  1. OMG! That is intense... I"m the MSer and though I've kept up the paperwork so far, it is getting's pretty scary, should I show that pile
    to my husband....not yet...

  2. That's just mind boggling.  I just don't know how you keep up with everything and have time for yourself.  God Bless you Patrick and may you, Patti and Megan have a wonderful New Year.


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